Motor insurance adjusters get jumpstart from Alibaba’s fintech arm

AI-powered tool can assess vehicle damage in as fast as six seconds, helping motor insurers operate faster

Motor insurance adjusters get jumpstart from Alibaba’s fintech arm

Insurance News

By Gabriel Olano

Ant Financial, a fintech affiliate of e-commerce giant Alibaba, has debuted an artificial intelligence-powered image recognition system that can help motor insurance claims adjusters operate faster and more efficiently.

Around 45 million vehicle insurance claims are made in China each year, and around 60% of those claims are for exterior damage. The new AI tool aims to save insurers time and resources by speeding up the exterior damage assessment process. It also makes assessment of damage more standardised, lessening the chance of human claims adjusters on-site being influenced by both parties to the accident.

“It is a technology that we are constantly working on to improve, therefore we are offering it for free to insurance companies,” said Yin Ming, president of Ant Financial’s insurance unit.  “We are opening up our AI capabilities to our partners, so that they can reduce cost and better serve small and micro-businesses.”

Immediately after an accident, motorists can simply take a photo of the damage and send it to the insurer, where the AI will assess the extent of the damage and estimate the cost of repair. It can even provide a list of nearby auto repair shops and their prices.

In a product demonstration held recently in Beijing, the AI algorithm took six seconds each to assess 12 different cases, while human claims adjusters took an average of 6 minutes and 48 seconds.

Initially, the tool is available only to insurance companies, but there are plans to offer it to car owners within a year from launch.

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